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    Williams Says Atlantic Sunrise Near, Will Appeal Constitution Pipe Denial


Constitution decision to be appealed to DC Circuit Court of Appeals

by: Dale Lunan

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Williams Says Atlantic Sunrise Near, Will Appeal Constitution Pipe Denial

Oklahoma-based Williams Partners said July 19 its 1.7bn ft3/day Atlantic Sunrise gas pipeline project is nearing completion, with full service expected in the second half of August.

Atlantic Sunrise is seen as a critical expansion of the existing Transco system connecting Marcellus shale gas production to mid-Atlantic and Southeastern US markets. A portion of the mainline has already been placed in service, providing 550mn ft3/day of capacity.

Mechanical completion is expected by early August, pending appropriate weather conditions, while full service in the second half of August assumes the “timely receipt” of remaining regulatory approvals.

In another development, news agency Reuters reported July 19 that Williams intends to appeal a decision from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (Ferc) to not re-hear an earlier decision denying approval of the Constitution pipeline designed to move 650mn ft3/day of Appalachian gas from Pennsylvania to New York.

On July 19, Ferc said it would not revisit a January decision ruling that New York’s Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) did not waive its authority to issue a water quality certification for Constitution.

Williams has argued that a state waives its right to issue clean water certifications by not acting on requests in a timely manner. Williams first filed with the DEC in August 2013, then withdrew and resubmitted its application twice, at DEC’s request.

In April 2016, DEC denied the application, a decision which Williams unsuccessfully appealed all the way to the US Supreme Court. Ferc’s decision to not rehear the case opens the door for Williams to appeal that decision in the DC Circuit Court of Appeals.